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Has anyone needed to use a safty vest for young children to ride the school bus?

My 3 year old has recently started a preschool disability program through my local schools. His reaction to the bus ride to school (he is fine coming home) was soo bad one day they dropped him off at another school for me to pick him up at. They also will not let him back onto the bus without the safty harness (it hooks to the seat). I understand their point, that he could put other riders at risk. I however can't get him to wear the harness without freaking out. Any advice from anyone that has experienced anything similar would be great!


Asked by LoriLou75 at 5:15 PM on Feb. 14, 2010 in Preschoolers (3-4)

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Answers (5)
  • Kids with disability go to a special school starting at age 3 as part of an Early Intervention Program. A lot of times only for a few hours a 2-3 days a week at a school that can be as far away as 30 min. Not always conducive to pick up and drop off. Plus it is an independence skill that will need to be learned. Getting on and off a bus with out mom or dad.

    To the OP: First talk to your child occupational therapist if he has one about having this skill (wearing the vest) added in to his program. Also work with him at home with it. Rewarding him first for touching it. then for allowing you to touch him with it and finally him allowing you to put it on him. this can be a time consuming process depending on the child. So you can either talk to the school about what other alternatives you have or go the 'mean; route and let him scream it out on the bus while still working with him. The driver can deal.

    Answer by Anonymous at 5:28 PM on Feb. 14, 2010

  • Not sure I understand why you are sending a 3 yr old on a bus in the first place.... what's the disability?

    Answer by Anonymous at 5:16 PM on Feb. 14, 2010

  • when you're 3, I would guess the giant loud bus can be quite scary!

    hm.. drive him to school yourself? find a carpool to join so you can take turns with other moms driving the kids to school?

    Answer by Anonymous at 5:18 PM on Feb. 14, 2010

  • 5:38- Thank you soo much for the advice. He is in an early intervention program. His school is about 20 min away, and it is impossible to get him there on time after getting my other children on their bus.
    I agree, this is a skill he needs to learn. I will speak to his OT first thing. I will also try your recomendation to ease into it with rewards. THANK YOU!!

    Answer by LoriLou75 at 5:35 PM on Feb. 14, 2010

  • Can you ask the county about alternate transportation? I know in our county if kids can't safely ride the bus, the school system contracts with a private transportation company to provide a "carpool" in either stationwagons or large SUVs. I've always felt safer with my kids in one of these "cabs" than on the school bus. (my son has autism)

    Answer by missanc at 6:00 PM on Feb. 14, 2010